Tusculum College has announced a new Master of Arts in education program with a concentration in special education: interventionist K-8/comprehensive K-12, beginning August 2017.
This program is particularly important due to recent changes made by the Tennessee Department of Education, according to Dr. Tricia Hunsader, dean of the School of Education and professor of education. “Beginning in the 2017-18 school year, special educator emergency permits and waivers will no longer be accepted. This means that all special educators (new and current) must hold a full, valid license with a special education endorsement. The department will not approve any permits or waivers for the 2017-18 school year.”
Tusculum is approved by the state to recommend licensed educators for a provisional endorsement in special education if they are enrolled in Tusculum’s special education program. The Special Education coursework is offered as a concentration in the master’s degree in education program or as a 19-credit course sequence for teachers who are not seeking a master’s degree.
According to a letter received from Commissioner of Education Candice McQueen, Tusculum College has been asked to collaborate with the state in order to provide a way for teachers to earn the special education endorsement and meet the new requirements.
“This program allows educators to do just that,” said Dr. Hunsader.
Candidates for the graduate-level advanced-degree program who are seeking interventionist K-8 and comprehensive K-12 endorsement must have completed an initial licensure program at an approved institution and currently hold licensure in either the elementary or middle school grade range.
According to Dr. Hunsader, all courses in this program are K-12 and prepare candidates to instruct students across the developmental spectrum. Candidates will tailor their course assignments to the grade range for which they are seeking interventionist endorsement.
She added that the addition of this program is especially timely given the state’s recent change to the special educator credential requirement. Teachers who complete this program and pass the national Praxis exam will meet all state requirements for full licensure in special education.
In addition to this new graduate program, Tusculum has also announced that the special education: interventionist K-8/comprehensive K-12 coursework will be offered to non-degree seeking students as a concentration of six courses and a practicum experience. Completion of the non-degree coursework will also satisfy the state’s new requirements.
For more information or to enroll in the program contact Katie Tassell at 888-488-7285 or visit https://web.tusculum.edu/admission/prof_application.php.